Cleveland Fire Brigade says arson remains a significant drain on time and resources - and the number of incidents tends to rise in April. A campaign has been launched warning arsonists they will be caught while urging the public to help by locking away their wheelie bins.
Around seven out of ten fires are started on purpose across Teesside and the Cleveland Fire Service is asking for residents help to prevent deliberate fires.
Simple things like making sure wheelie bins or rubbish is not left outside your house can make a difference.
Work is under way to build a new fire station on the Headland at Hartlepool.
The new £830,000 Headland Fire Station will replace the existing 50-year-old building to meet the needs of a modern fire and rescue service, according to Cleveland Fire Brigade..
Leaving chip pans unattended is one of the most common causes of accidental house fires, according to Cleveland Fire Service.
Les Jones, head of community safety, warned Teesside students of the dangers of putting on chips for a midnight snack after a night out.
Firefighters have shows students on Teesside what happens when chip pans are left unattended in a controlled demonstration.
Firefighters have been showing students on Teesside the dangers of leaving chip pans and cooking unattended. Their displays at Stockton Riverside College are part of this year's Kitchen Fire Safety campaign being run by the Cleveland Brigade.
– Phil Lancaster, Director of Community Protection with the Service
"This is a really high profile campaign as almost half of house fires across Cleveland start in the kitchen and by following a few simple tips, they could be prevented."
Cleveland Fire service is warning people to keep safe in their kitchens.
Last year around 50% of accidental house fires in Cleveland started in the kitchen - when people left cooking or chip pans unintended.
The figure has fallen from 65% in 2012 but firecrews say they're determined to reduce that further to save more lives.
Firefighters on Teesside are launching a campaign about fire safety in the kitchen.
The Fire Brigades Union is holding a rally against what it claims are dangerous cuts being planned by Cleveland Fire Brigade.
Speakers will include FBU president Alan McLean, MP for Middlesbrough Andy McDonald and MP for Middlesbrough South & East Cleveland Tom Blenkinsop.
The rally is being held today (8 February) at 1.30pm by the Bottle of Notes sculpture in Centre Square, Middlesbrough.
Cleveland Fire Authority says changes are necessary because of a government-imposed £6 million reduction to its budget during the next four years.
Cleveland Fire Brigade has issued Chinese Lantern safety advice ahead of Chinese New Year celebrations. Since 2009 there have been 11 Chinese lantern incidents throughout Cleveland.
– PHIL LANCASTER Cleveland Fire Brigade’s Director of Community Protection
“With Chinese New Year almost upon us I appeal to local people to think about the potential consequences of igniting a sky lantern.
“The huge fire at Smethwick in the West Midlands last year is a reminder to us all of the devastation they can cause. As a Brigade we will continue to lobby the Government to introduce legislation to ban sky lanterns.
“Once they are lit and travel into the sky, no-one has any control over where and when they will land. They pose a serious risk to property, wildlife, the environment and people’s lives and the sooner they are banned, the better.”
SAFETY TIPS FROM CLEVELAND FIRE BRIGADE
-Lanterns must be used by responsible adults only
-Water should always be on hand in case the lanterns catch fire
-The launch area needs to be kept clear of combustible materialsDamaged lanterns must not be used
-Ensure sufficient clearance to avoid obstacles such as trees, powerlines or buildings
-Do not launch near roads, especially major roads or motorways
-Do not launch within five miles of an airport
-Do not launch in wind speeds in excess of five miles per hour (mph)Do not smoke whilst handling lanterns
Firefighters across the country are going on strike today in a row with the Government over proposals to change pension services.
Members of the Fire Brigades Union (FBU) are staging industrial action from 4pm to 12pm.
The planned strike has seen some authorities, including Cleveland Fire Brigade, train auxiliary firefighters to provide emergency cover during the disruption to services.